Public advocate visits shelter where toddlers died

Public Advocate Letititia James visited the Hunts Point shelter where two young sisters died Wednesday when a malfunctioning radiator blasted them with scalding steam.

She arrived to get a firsthand look at the scene. She joined friends and neighbors of the Ambrose family to console the mourning parents.

Scylee Vayoh Ambrose and Ibanez Ambrose, 1 and 2 years old, were rushed to Lincoln Hospital from 720 Hunts Point Ave. around 12 p.m. Wednesday with burns on their faces and bodies, officials said. The medical examiner ruled both deaths accidental on Thursday, citing hyperthermia and heat-related injuries from the steam.

"It's not fair," lamented Peter Ambrose, the girls' father. "The most beautiful kids in the world...dead .The radiator leaked the steam, killed my babies."

Neighbors say they heard a loud boom and the parents screaming. The girls lived with their family in one of the building's five units used as a temporary "cluster" shelter by the Department of Homeless Services. The four other families living in the building are being relocated, officials say.

The Bronx District Attorney's Office Thursday also said that it would investigate landlord Moshe Piller, who was on the public advocate's list of worst landlords in 2014 and 2015, but not 2016.

The parents have not been charged in the incident, but sources tell News 12 that they have been the subject of six prior child welfare cases in New York and Maine. Police also say the father has been arrested twice, including once last year for allegedly possessing a hypodermic instrument.

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